Gorzellany underwent offseason shoulder surgery and just began throwing long toss off flat ground. He will not have time to throw enough bullpen sessions or exhibition game innings to open the year on the active roster.
Asked if he still considers Davis a platoon player, Brad Ausmus said he does. "I'm not locked into it, but probably if I had to choose today, I'd lean that direction," he said. "That doesn't mean he can't earn his way into more playing time with us. We gotta fill that position somehow. And if Rajai proves he can play against any starting pitcher, then he'll play if he helps us win."
Davis has thrived mostly left-handed pitching throughout his career. He has been one of the premier base stealers in the sport, but you can't steal first base. His .312 on-base percentage last season was a reflection of his impatience and poor eye at the plate. He had just 21 walks in 331 at-bats.
Brad Ausmus said
Iglesias was brilliant defensively and one of the surprises of baseball with the bat in 2013. He batted .303 with 39 runs scored in 350 at-bats after a trade brought him from Boston.
"Inning weren't here anymore," Buck Showalker explained to MASNSports.com. "Want him to stay sharp as he's been here."
The Tigers could groom Mercedes for that spot. They signed 39-year-old Joe Nathan in the offseason for that role, but will need to groom a closer for the future. Mercedes, however, has proven neither consistent nor a premier strikeout pitcher at the minor league level.
"He's trying to get in the lineup on opening day," Sandberg said of Ruf, per the Philadelphia Daily News. "Looking at the at-bats and swings for the last 10 days of spring training, he's one of the hot bats. He would be a guy I want in there."
While Ruf is having a productive spring, he still has to earn a spot on the opening day roster.
"[His spring numbers] are good, that'll help him," general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said. "But he's not a lock. Nobody is a lock."
Soto has yet to play in spring training while recovering from foot surgery. He is in a race to be ready to assume the starting job on opening day. Rios has been out for a week with a rib cage injury.